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Demand Generation vs Lead Generation - Why do you need both?

Demand Generation vs Lead Generation - Why do you need both?

Roberto Boi
By Roberto Boi

Lead generation has always been a critical component of a good marketing strategy. 

Salespeople are ready to pick up the phone, make those calls and follow-ups and close the sales to reach their targets. 

Internet usage has grown exponentially in the last couple of years. Many businesses decided to invest in their online presence. Potential customers are now inundated with advertising, SMS, emails and calls, and it’s becoming increasingly harder to close potential leads and stay ahead of your competitors.

Digital Marketing has evolved, and with the infinite resources available on the internet, many companies have shifted their marketing strategy to a Demand Generation approach.

What is Demand Generation?

What is Demand Generation

Demand generation is a marketing strategy that takes a different angle than traditional lead generation. It’s about building brand awareness to generate interest in a specific product, brand, or service using an educational approach. 

Demand generation creates a need for one product or service, focusing on buying intent and building brand trust to develop a deeper connection with customers.

Why is Demand Generation important?

Demand generation creates excitement about your brand and its products and services and captures highly qualified leads for your sales team. It puts the customers in charge of their buying journey because they have easy access to information; therefore, your sales team's job will be much easier and more efficient. 

Demand generation directly impacts your lead generation strategy by qualifying and nurturing leads when they are ready to purchase a product or service from you. Educating your customers about your products and services and helping them understand the benefits of what you do and your brand’s purpose and mission is the best way to get the client who fits best within your brand.

What’s behind Demand Generation?

Whats behind Demand Generation

How do you go about getting your name out there? There are dozens of demand-generating marketing strategies, most of them long-term strategies that, if not all the time, pay their dividends. 

What can you do to create a good Demand Generation strategy:

  1. Content marketing: publishing helpful blogs, infographics, videos and educational content about your products and services. Just remember to take an educational approach rather than a sales one. Check our Dilate's strategy to content marketing for more tips.
  2. Events and Workshops: Whether online or offline, a public event is a great way to engage with your audience and build your brand authority.
  3. Optimise your landing pages: people visit your website to know more about something. Make sure your pages have plenty of good content to help the user understand your brand and products. Mark has some tips for you if you feel stuck with good landing page structure.
  4. Social Media Strategy: have as many touch points as possible and generate interest through your social media profiles and groups. Post your content, comment and participate in public discussions about your niche. Share thought leadership and expertise, and your customers will follow you.
  5. Search Engine Optimisation: position your services and content above your competitors on the search engines. Good keyword mapping and a website well-optimised for search engines will deliver incredible growth in traffic and engagement.

Demand generation is not about you

Demand Generation is about creating engagement for as many people as possible, limiting gated content which also means losing out on contact information.

Your strategy has to target customers at the top of the funnel who are not looking to solve a problem yet. You are helping your customers to educate themselves in the industry and to be able to identify issues that your services and product may help them fix when they are ready. Focus on the client’s needs and not on your products or services, create that affiliation with your brand and position yourself as an expert in your niche.

In the long term, a good Demand Generation strategy will drastically improve your Lead Generation campaign by increasing the quality and the number of leads coming from the top of the funnel you have been nurturing with your content strategies.

Define your marketing personas and know who your customers are and create valuable content worth your customer’s time and share.

So, is Lead Generation dead?

So is Lead Generation Dead

As good as Demand Generation sounds for your digital marketing strategy, you should still include Lead Generation tactics. So no, Lead Generation is not dead. In fact it’s still a critical element to effectively run a good marketing strategy. Lead generation sits at the bottom of your sales and marketing funnel, helps you capture your audience’s contact information and converts leads into valuable customers. Lead generation is the key to demonstrating your brand value and differentiation and is the last touch point in your customer buying journey.

The final verdict

Lead generation on it's own won't feed you results if you don't also pay attention to the customers that are sitting at the top of your sales funnel. These are the people waiting for the holy grail that will fix their problems, or, people that didn’t know they had a problem at all. This is the perfect opportunity to create a demand generation strategy and pull in those prospects and lead them to the bottom of your sales funnel to solve their problems once and for all. 

Demand Generation (Top of your sales funnel)

  • Increase your brand authority
  • Share thought leadership and expertise
  • Educate your customers about your niche and products/service and potential pain points they may face
  • Provide valuable content to your audience without friction
  • Engage as many people as possible

Lead Generation (Bottom of your sales funnel)

  • Capture your customers 
  • Discover your customer problem and provide them with a solution
  • Deliver an excellent strategy to solve the issues and gather tangible insights 
  • Measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts

Let’s talk!

Demand and Lead Generation are equally crucial to your brand’s marketing strategy. Using both requires you to think about your goals, your target audience and where they would be in your sales funnel, what resources you can allocate to which channels, making sure you can measure your results and lastly, experiment and adjust to what works best for your business. If you’re unsure how to create a killer demand generation and lead generation strategy, let’s talk!

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